Too Much to Say
Written for 14 Valentines: Women in Sports.
"Hakkai!" Gojyo called again, staring up the steep incline at his friend, who was sitting on a large rock, his back to Gojyo.
Still no answer, and Gojyo clambered up the rockface, using deeply-rooted weeds as hand- and toe-holds in the parts where the slope became too steep to navigate otherwise. "Hakkai," he said a third time, hearing his voice come out uncertain and hating himself for it.
"Yes?" Hakkai said calmly, his face imperturbable as always.
Gojyo stood watching him for a long moment, then shook his head. "Sanzo sent me--" his lip curled at the idea of being the mighty Sanzo-sama's errand boy "--to tell you that we'll be leaving in ten minutes."
"Ah." Another silence, and then: "Tell him I'll be there directly."
Gojyo told himself not to hesitate any longer, did anyway, and only left when it became obvious that Hakkai wasn't about to walk back to Jeep with him. He hadn't looked at Gojyo once during their conversation.
Hakkai kept his eyes firmly on the road, giving it far more attention than it deserved, considering the flatness of the terrain. Still, looking at the road was safer than looking anywhere else. It was a shame that his thoughts were less disciplined than his eyes; they kept slipping back with fearful regularity to the events of the previous night, no matter how forcefully Hakkai willed himself to think of something--anything--else.
It had, of course, been good. Hakkai had had no doubts that Gojyo was an attentive lover. Long red hair and a beautiful face and body did no more than attract attention, after all; it could only be Gojyo's skills in bed that brought so many women back.
That, or the flashes of rare sweetness that crept over his face and the gentleness in his hands... Hakkai wished that he could believe that those had been for him alone, even as he knew that he was deluding himself. That Gojyo cared for him--maybe even loved him--was undeniable. So was the fact that they had been four days on the road with no town in sight, and Sanzo would kill anyone who touched him, and Goku was still so very young.
They'd picked up a couple of tents several hundred miles back when they'd noticed the small towns and settlements on their route growing increasingly sparse. By the third night camping out, Sanzo had been irritable to the point of homicide, Hakkai's own smiles most often hid gritted teeth, and Gojyo had seemed ready to vibrate out of his skin. Really, Hakkai thought, the touch on his hip that came late that night had been inevitable. So, unfortunately, had been his response.
He could have feigned sleep; Gojyo, though importunate, wouldn't dream of coercing an unwilling partner. He could have pulled away from Gojyo's hand, and the following morning might have been a bit awkward, but then they'd forget about it. Instead, he'd turned over and stared up into Gojyo's wide eyes, enjoying the momentary shock that quickly gave way to the customary smirk. And then Gojyo leaned forward to kiss him, and the little voice in Hakkai's head that was urging caution finally shut up.
Gojyo kissed like Goku ate food: with fervor and passion and a deep, heartfelt appreciation. His hair fell in a dark curtain around Hakkai's face, and Hakkai twined his arms behind Gojyo's head and pulled him closer, drinking greedy, desperate kisses from his mouth.
Eventually Gojyo pulled away a little so that he could strip them both, and he touched Hakkai's naked body with his hands and mouth and tongue.
"Gojyo," Hakkai murmured, twisting his fingers into Gojyo's hair, when Gojyo licked the skin over his heart.
"Yeah," Gojyo said and kissed Hakkai's collarbone.
Hakkai shivered with the sensation, and then felt his heart jump in his chest when Gojyo rummaged in his bag for some oil that he smoothed over Hakkai's painfully stiff cock before easing himself down onto it. His skin gleamed in the soft light of the tent, and Hakkai felt his hands drawn to it. He stroked Gojyo's thighs and the sharp cut of his hips and his tense forearms, while Gojyo fucked himself on Hakkai, and Hakkai lost himself in the pleasure of another person's body for the first time in years...
Jeep started to drift to the right, and Hakkai turned the wheel slightly to correct their course. Maybe, he thought savagely, it hadn't been as good as he'd thought. Maybe his years of celibacy and his relative inexperience were making more of the encounter than it had been in actuality. It was perhaps a little easier to believe that that was why the two of them would have only that one night together, rather than to remember the women who would be claiming Gojyo's interest and affections as soon as they returned to civilization.
Gojyo scowled at his food. They'd found a town, finally, which meant dinner that didn't consist of stew and getting to sleep in a real bed, but none of that mattered because Hakkai was ignoring him. Okay, so he'd been doing that all day, but somehow it was even more noticeable when they were all sitting around the dinner table. The monkey was grinning as though nothing could be wrong in the world while he had a dumpling in each hand and at least two more crammed into his mouth; Sanzo was ignoring Goku's atrocious table manners with the ease of long practice; and Hakkai...wasn't there. Even though he was sitting right at the table with the rest of them.
The thought that Gojyo might have done something to him last night, might have broken some fragile piece of Hakkai that he hadn't even known to watch out for, had popped into his head earlier that day, and now he couldn't stop thinking about it. Just the idea made his stomach clench and left a sour taste in his mouth. Unsurprisingly, his dinner wasn't looking all that appetizing just then.
The worst part was, Hakkai had wanted it last night--or at least Gojyo was pretty sure that he had, and he generally had a good sense for those things. Which meant that whatever went wrong had to have happened sometime after Gojyo touched him and Hakkai accepted his invitation.
The sex itself had been incredible, naturally. Hakkai naked was an amazing thing: soft, pale skin unmarked but for the deep purple scar across his abdomen--and even that looked good compared to the gaping wound that it had once been--which still left miles of smooth skin for Gojyo to touch and long legs and arms and fingers that caressed him and drew him close.
Gojyo'd had to still the tremble of his own fingers before he could reciprocate. Hakkai had liked it when Gojyo stroked his hip, when he nuzzled his neck and chest and armpit. He'd sighed when Gojyo licked his nipples and kissed the soft curve of his neck. Gojyo had wanted to cup his hand over Hakkai's stomach, but didn't quite dare, so instead he'd traced the lines of Hakkai's ribs and tongued the skin over Hakkai's beating heart.
And then he'd let Hakkai fuck him, even though he didn't usually do that with guys, because...well, because he had been trying to be careful with him. Only now it seemed like his effort had gone for nothing.
After dinner, the four of them trooped upstairs, and Gojyo couldn't even muster up the energy to react when Hakkai followed Sanzo into his room, leaving Gojyo and Goku to room together.
"What did you do to Hakkai?" Goku asked him in a faintly accusatory tone.
"Nothing," Gojyo said harshly. He didn't typically have moral objections to lying to the monkey, but this particular lie still managed to make him feel like shit.
The second day after they slept together was pretty much Day One all over again, only this time Gojyo was really trying. He didn't push Hakkai into talking to him, but a couple of times throughout the day he tossed a couple of comments his way: just small observations or jokes that didn't require any response. He teased Goku--and then dodged Sanzo's fan when he got fed up with their squabbling--and took a couple of naps in the back seat and pretended that everything was normal so hard that it hurt.
Hakkai didn't even seem to notice, much less to care.
By the third day, Gojyo knew he had to do something. Most people who acted this way, he'd figure that they just needed a little time inside their own heads, but this was Hakkai. If Gojyo let him get too lost in his own thoughts, he might never come back out. He'd seen it happen before, and the fact that this time it was completely and utterly Gojyo's own fault only made it more vital that he fix this.
So that night, Gojyo waylaid the monk while he was smoking on the porch after dinner. He tried out a few ways he could approach this conversation in his head, but all of them seemed as likely to piss Sanzo off as to accomplish Gojyo's objective, and finally he just said, "We're switching rooms. Got it?"
Sanzo looked at him with his usual disdain. Then he shrugged. "Doesn't make any difference to me."
"Okay," Gojyo said, clamping down hard on the inexplicable urge to thank him, and went back upstairs.
He didn't bother knocking on the door to Hakkai's and...well, his, now...room, just pushed it open and walked inside. Hakkai was sitting on the bed closest to the window, and he looked up from his book when Gojyo entered the room. He didn't look pleased to see him.
"Uh, we need to...talk," Gojyo said awkwardly.
Hakkai looked at him with the same expression that Jeep had worn while stalking a fieldmouse earlier that day, and Gojyo gulped and forced himself to not step back.
"You sound almost uncomfortable," Hakkai said, smiling his most terrifying smile. "I'm sure that you have more than enough experience in these sorts of matters to set you at your ease, Gojyo."
"Not...really," Gojyo said, and wondered if anything in the world could have prepared him for this conversation.
"Hahaha," Hakkai laughed politely.
Gojyo flinched. Then he made himself walk over to the other bed and sit down, because if they were going to do this thing, then they could at least do it next to each other rather than shouting across the room.
"Look," he said, when it became obvious that Hakkai wasn't going to do anything but stare at him with that same fixed smile on his face. "I know that you want to pretend that that whole night never happened, and I've been trying, but everything's gone to shit, anyway. So just tell me what you need me to do, and I'll do it." He swallowed against the pain in his throat. "I promise, Hakkai."
"Anything?" Hakkai said delicately.
Gojyo swallowed again. He knew--or at least he was pretty damn sure--that Hakkai wouldn't intentionally do anything to hurt him, but that still left a lot of room for him to cause Gojyo some serious damage. If he said, "I need you to stop being my friend," or even "I need you to ignore me the way I've been ignoring you. Forever," Gojyo would do it, but he'd probably shred his heart in the process. He nodded anyway. "Yeah, anything."
Hakkai's smile turned sharp enough to cut. "I want you to tell me why you did it."
"Uh..." Gojyo blinked at him. "Isn't that kind of...obvious?" The way he tried to keep Hakkai as close as possible wasn't exactly subtle, after all, and Hakkai was way too smart not to have picked up on it.
"Yes," Hakkai said simply. "But I need to hear you say the words. You did promise me, Gojyo."
Gojyo took a fortifying breath. "Right. Well...you were tired or something, frustrated, 'cause we'd been on the road so long, I guess, and I wanted to make you feel better." Hakkai tilted his head to one side thoughtfully, but Gojyo couldn't pay too much attention to him if he wanted to get this all out.
"And I could see you a bit in the moonlight coming through the tent walls, and you were...you looked good. And I could smell you." Here Hakkai wrinkled his nose, no doubt remembering how they'd gone half the week without baths, but Gojyo truly meant it in a good way: he liked the faintly metallic scent of Hakkai's sweat, and Hakkai was such a clean person generally that four days without washing concentrated his scent without it becoming too unpleasant.
The last part was the hardest, but Gojyo had promised. "And, you know, I'm in love with you, so--"
Hakkai gasped, startling Gojyo out of his awkward confession. There was an odd look on his face--even for Hakkai, who wore odd looks the way some people wore hats--and he'd gone noticeably pale. "Are you okay?" Gojyo asked, concerned.
Hakkai shook his head, but it didn't look as though he were answering Gojyo's question. "You...are in love with me."
"Well, yeah. But you knew that already," Gojyo reminded him.
"No, I didn't."
There was a terrible sinking feeling in Gojyo's gut. That he could have fucked things up even further, just when he was trying to fix them...
"I didn't know," Hakkai repeated, a strange tone in his voice.
"I'm sorry," Gojyo said helplessly. "I didn't mean to--I thought you knew."
"No," Hakkai said. There was a distant expression on his face, and Gojyo felt so queasy that he seriously thought he might vomit. Forget Hakkai ignoring him for the past few days, he'd be lucky if Hakkai even looked at him again. Hakkai was--
--suddenly right next to him. "Gojyo," he said, just before he kissed him, and Gojyo was confused as fuck, jittery with nerves and the lingering remnants of blind terror, but there was nothing in the world that could keep him from kissing Hakkai back. There were about a million questions that he wanted answers to, but they could straighten all that out later. For now, this was more important. And then Hakkai pulled back just enough to mumble, "Love you, too," before kissing him again, and Gojyo figured that that was pretty much all he really needed to know, anyway.